I have now completed preparing the albums of the photographs taken at cave sites in the Lonavala area, which took up the first week of my recent trip to India. They include some 360° photographs and are arranged in five different albums:
These are roughly arranged in chronological order, although in fact, as most of the sites were under construction for 100s of years, there is overlap. The cave sites are different in features, varying from remote meditation centres to heavily patronised and developed sites to sites now taken over by Hindu shrines.
I have updated my original blog posts that were written at the time of our visits to introduce the sites; and wherever possible I have also included materials from the Poona Gazetteer written under the British rule in 1885 that first gave a good description of the sites as these often contain translations of the inscriptions found there, and throw light on the condition of the caves some 130 years previous.
One thing that needs mentioning is that this is only a partial representation of the sites that exist, being the most interesting visually. There are in fact many excavated caves in the region that were used as strict meditation retreats, and consist of just one cave without much decoration. Because of time restrictions we were unable to visit any of these sites, which is a loss.